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I can easily fill pages with words about fictional characters, perfect strangers, friends, relatives, associates, anyone other than myself. And my guess is readers of this and other blogs would prefer to read about anyone but the blogger behind the blog.

But I’m allowing myself this luxury and begging your indulgence because I have news and I bring gifts.

First the news (and a brief note from our sponsors):

My latest novel, The Martyr’s Brother, will be available next week.  That’s the official date, but (yes, here it comes) it’s already available on Amazon and on a pre-order basis through my website (ronasimmons.com).

Okay, phew, that’s out of the way.

Here’s where you ask, what’s the book about and why should you fork over a few hard earned dollars to buy a copy then devote an afternoon or day of your time to reading the book?

At the most basic page-turning level The Martyr’s Brother is a cat and mouse story of a young man from the Middle East intent on committing an act of terror in the US and the woman who must stop him. But if you peel back the layers, the book is also the story of the impact an act of terror has on the people it touches.

And then there’s your retort. You ask, what do I know about terror? To best answer that, I’ll use the words of my protagonist, Alicia Blake.  In the book, she says, “people had forgotten there was a day in the not too distant past when they’d not seen or heard of bombings, and suicide vests, and snipers.”

I am fortunate to have lived in a time and place where terrorism didn’t happen in our backyards. I hope people don’t forget, and I pray that terrorism does not define our future.

Do you prefer to watch a video or what’s known as a “book trailer” to convince you? Check out the video I created on YouTube (Book Trailer: The Martyr’s Brother) or perhaps the podcast of me reading the first page.  (Reading from The Martyr’s Brother)

And now the gifts:

I’m taking a different tack in releasing the book. Trying to be “social” and tech-savvy, I’m holding a virtual book launch party on Facebook. The party will feature all the trappings of a real world book launch: music, libations, hors d’oeuvres, special guests, lots of chatter, and yes contests, prizes, and gifts.

To join the party, go to my Facebook event (Launch Party ) on October 26 from 4 pm to 7 pm (Eastern). Say hello and congratulations by commenting on the page, join the conversation, and stay as long or as little as you like. Everyone wins something. And a few will take away gift certificates and copies of The Martyr’s Brother.

Thank you. And, for the next post, we’ll be back to our regular programming!